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  CSPAN    Washington Journal    News/Business. Journalists and  
   policy-makers take viewer questions; newspaper articles.  

    September 4, 2010
    7:00 - 10:00am EDT  

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legislation and its impact on the self-employed. jendayi frazer has the latest on the situation in sudan. author charles peters talks about his biography of lyndon johnson. "washington journal" is next. ♪ >> good morning. it is september 4, 2010. it is the saturday before labor day weekend. peggy noonan has an opinion piece or she asked, "is this 1994 all over again?" is this 1994 again? the numbers to call republican [applause]
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democrats 202-737-0002 an independent called orszag at 202-628-0205. peggy noonan writes, "he did not have to be a political professional to see what is in the air." will they get up to a 2018? will the republicans take control of the chamber? she reminds us of the history. that year the republicans swept the house races. the republican majority and republican speaker, newt gingrich -- she writes that
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speaker nancy pelosi is a famously in no danger. it probably means something that she appears to have gone missing from the national scene. cbs had her at 11% approval rating among registered voters in march. republicans were beating democrats might tend points 54% to 24%. in the history of that poll, the gop has never led by more than five points. what do you think? is this 1994 again? will the republicans be able to surge ahead and take control of the house? the stock about governors' races. can they take strides there? what is that need to president obama and his time in office? she went to a conservative activist to give his taken things. he was a contributor to the "contract to america."
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he was the founder of "americans for tax reform." he was one of the most insightful political reserves -- observers. he noted that republicans in 1994 were not pulling as well this strongly and this early. there are parallels between 1994 and 2010. when his determination. the republican party said its mind to winning back the house in 1994. before that, it was seen as impossible. let's get to your calls. is this 1994 again? >> good morning. i guess i i am first. democrats need to speak out strong. i love the way the guy ahead on ms nbc talks in your face and is not afraid to back down.
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what has obama done that is so wrong? he is being tarnished and put down by the right. he has passed the health-care bill that does not have a public auction, but the health-care bill will prevent people from going into medical bankruptcies, which is the number one cause of bankruptcy in the united states. it helps the lower and middle class. it helps not being thrown out of health care coverage when you need it most. he is being put down with this term "obama character "there is no discussion about the value of the health care bill going forward. it did not address "too big to fail." he is starting to fight back against the lobbyists, the mountains of representatives of
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the financial institutions. what has obama done that is so wrong? the democrats have to start to fight back and talk back. fight fire with fire. i am not saying to resort to dirty politics. we do not need to get that far, but we need to get back in their face. obama has done really good things. >> thus the to our next caller. on the independent line from florida. david, good morning. david, are you with us? you are on the air. we will move on to ray on the republican line in rhode island. >> i am a truck driver going to downtown rhode island after the hurricane. my grandchildren -- i tell my grandchildren it was afraid to go on land. >> what is your comment? we have lost ray.
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our first caller from new york was talking about the democrats controlling their message. this piece from the "new york times." democrats are entering the fall spratt to elections lacking a universal message. they are out of time to show substantial results before voters go to polls. there blurt -- their vulnerability has increased since august. they had been weak on the economy and in their polls. let's check out in lafayette, ga., on the democrat line. >> had the feel the democrats are going to do? all of this is negative publicity against president obama. it is not about the real deal -- the job situation. i think we would do just fine.
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>> do you think the democrats have to put out a specific message before election day? caller: i think they need to get the message out about what president obama has done and what he is still trying to do. he needs time. this will not happen overnight. host: the democrat's campaign message is a babble of individual voices. that is from the "new york times." they are entering their the states with party leader encouragement. the stimulus ideas are mostly tax cuts. spending proposals would have no chance of republican support. republicans have supported tax- cutting ideas as well. they want new spending for job- creating public works. there is a press pool going on there in the messaging. thus check-in with montana on
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the independent line. what do you think? it will this be 1994 all over again? caller: i am 61-years old. i do not think it is going to be 1994 again. i think this is a dream that republicans have. i am an independent. i will not vote republican. i do not want to be under china's tom because we owe everybody in the world. i do not want to put the republicans back in power. they are the ones that screw everything up. they do not know how to run government. host: the new york times reports that democrats are we united in opposing top rates. the chief debate has been over whether to make middle-class tax rates permanent.
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now democrats are weighing whether they may have to accept a one-year extension of the tax rate for the wealthy. they fear a attacks from republicans to argue that no one should pay higher taxes before the economy recovers fully. the stick to william in charlotte, north carolina. caller: how are you doing this morning? i think the problem with the democrats is they are lifted the republicans create their own narrative. if you are a leader you create your own narrative. you tell the people what you have done. as far as the liberals and the democrats, the compromise on some of the bills and they were water down. they basically said know about everything. for the democrats to do well in the fall, they have to come out and say what they did in the past and they have to get other democrats on board. because the republicans are
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taking control of the study -- of the story and are happy people believe these lies. they are only going to listen to what is told to them by the media. host: in the "washington post's" now all the democrats' agenda, the president was outraged over the country's sorry fiscal state. in my view, we had nothing to show for it. that was senator michael bennet of colorado. he voted yes on the stimulus and the health-care overhaul. faced with the potential white belt in the midterm elections, candidates are embracing budget cuts. thus go to atlanta, georgia on the democrat line.
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good morning. caller: i wanted to respond to you about peggy noonan's comments. she has always appeared to be racist to me. this is not 1994 and everybody isaware that the president' trying to help people. it is amazing that people who need help will vote against things that they need. you have to get out to vote. they think you are sleeping. wake up america. host: we are talking about her peace in the "wall street journal." the question is is this 1994 again? whether republicans make a surge in come out ahead in the house or the senate? what about the governor's races?
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let's go to maryland up in marlboro. tony on our democrats line. good morning. caller: i do not think it is 1994 again. i think the american people have really grown up and it between the two bushes and everything else and these new republicans we happily in the house now, i think the american people, between the internet and other ways of getting used, i think they have grown up a lot. i am satisfied with the president and his programs and the bills that he has passed. i am pleased with mike congressman. i think she's doing an excellent job. i think, no, this is not 1994 again. host: time magazine has a piece this week about hal obama has become unpopular.
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-- cal obama has become unpopular. -- how obama has become unpopular. today his job approval has been hovering a ralph 40%. that means one in four americans has changed their minds. it is particularly dramatic among independents. let's check in with jack in inglewood, florida. good morning. i do not think we have them. gregory, are you on the air with us? caller from connecticut. go ahead. caller: i saw some information yesterday. we would be making over $80,000 if we were making what we were.
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we are looking at a huge pall over the last 70 years. we have gone from 5% unemployment [unintelligible] you cannot have 1932 without a president. host: let's go to georgia. good morning. caller: there is no way this is going to be 1994 again. i want america to realize.
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democrats are trying to pass the public extension. i think that is going to come back and haunt them real bad. it is time for the people to be helped. they blocked everything obama tried to do. people, wake up. do not let the conservatives take back over. it will be catastrophic. host: do you plan to vote in november? caller: i most definitely will. we are reuniting the black population and the hispanics. they make us look bad. come out and vote. we see it as a motivation. host: the new york times look said michelle obama and her role in this election cycle.
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she is shifting course this, stepping up our policy agenda and slipping into election-year politics to campaign and raise money for democrats. she has championed the cause is like fighting publicity. she is torn to use her political capital to enhance president obama's agenda and her own. her daughter's return to school after labor day. she will start a white house dance series on tuesday. she will travel to new orleans on wednesday. she would tell laura bush on september 11 for the ninth anniversary of the terrorist attacks. there is speculation about how much campaigning and fund- raising she might do. codgers and sestet of pennsylvania has repeatedly asked for help from obama, but
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the president put him off. let's go to kansas city, kansas. robert is joining us on the republican line. good morning. >> kansas city is -- caller: kansas city is actually in misery. -- in missouri. 75% or 84% are democrats. why are like -- why is it so heavily favored on that one side? i waited a long time for the phone to be answered. why is it so heavily weighted towards democrats on the shows? host: we work hard to get a
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balance. we try to juggle things up and make sure we have a balance of colors. what do you think about the midterm elections? caller: i think it will be a whitewash. i think it will be more seats than anybody is talking about. it will make 1994 a small wave. host: does that mean the house? does that mean the senate as well? caller: i do not think there are enough seats open in the senate that they can do that in one election. i think it will take two elections. the house will be republican after this november. it will not be funny. i think it is a great thing. i do not think we should be listening to peggy noonan. she disbared herself from a lot of things republicans in the
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2008 election cycle with her talk about eloquence, barack obama, and people like sarah pailin. she has a lot to do before we accept her back as republican even though she pretends to be a conservative republican. people have said that she should not talk or act like that. you cannot expect to be accepted as a conservative republican. host: us go to gloria in north carolina on the independent line. caller: good morning. i hope that it is not 1994. as a matter of fact, i pray that it is not 1994 again. i will do all i can to make sure that the republicans do not gain control of the house because we know how our economy
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got to where it is. intelligent people know that the republicans put us where we are. they do not deserve a second chance. host: let's go to a republican and see what he thinks. caller: that last lady sure sounded like a independent did she not? i hope it is 1994 all over again. i would like to say one thing to all my democratic friends out there. you keep throwing this racist thing out any time someone disagrees with barack obama. the words are losing their meaning. it is ridiculous just because someone disagrees with your philosophy to for that term out there. it used to mean something, but it is getting to the point with al sharpton and the head of the
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naacp. the use that term so much against republicans that it is beginning to lose its meaning. host: let's talk about news makers this week. the commandant of the coast guard will join us. he will discuss the bp oil spill in the gulf. he is talking about safeguarding the iraqi oil platforms in the arabian gulf. >> are you confident that you have the resources in the organization and structure both from the coast guard and the government assets and industry assets to deal with an equal or greater spill back to come along? >> absolutely. we will take lessons from this bill and look at how equipment riffed -- how equipment performed. i am being flooded by people
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with different types of technology. we responded in an unprecedented way. we had coast guard forces down there from people to some of our versatile ships that we have. some had scanning capability. we worked to arrange for other skimmers to come down there. we are still in the process of discovery. we have a commission taking a look at it. we have investigations going on. it is premature to say that anything is a witness. we are pleased overall with the way we have responded. we are looking at the entire case and it will come up with recommendations. host: piquancy the entire
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interview on "newsmakers." it is also available online. a question for you this morning is "is this 1994 again?" with just eight weeks left before midterm elections, polls are expecting a shift in power in november. some think there will be a change of control in the senate. the following month, most pollsters expect strong confidence in their forecasts. let's go to kentucky where elizabeth joins us on the democrat line. the morning, elizabeth. caller: take you for taking my call. good morning. unfortunately, i think it is
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more like orwell's "1984." because of the supreme court's decision, i think we have become a corporate fascist empire. one long war or worse after wars to serve the contractors. i am very afraid. host: let's go to washington, d.c. of the republican line. caller: we are visiting from pennsylvania. you better pray that it is 1994 and more. the guy in office right now, mr. obama, he is projecting deficits up to $20 trillion by the time he is done. do you know how much that is? nobody comes back from that.
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another question for you. would you hand over part of your life for a bill that you had never read? nancy pelosi said, "oh yes. we have to find out what is in the bill by bidding for its." they do not even though what is in it. you know how much health care costs now. what do you think where you think -- where do you think health care costs are going to go? on cap and trade -- in china and india do not buy, we will be at a disadvantage with them. what do you think is going to happen then? you have to learn how to spell socialism because that is where we are headed. host: let's go to judy on our independent line in north carolina. good morning. caller: i wanted to say that i believe that your station, c-
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span, does so much for our process. if people would turn from "american idol" in these other programs and what you guys instead, they would learn about their candidates, about our representatives, and be able to make more informed decisions in the election. host: thank you, judy. what do you think about politics right now? do you think 1994 will reoccur? that means the republicans taking over the house. caller: i do not see 1994 reoccurring. i hope and i pray that enough people actually do the research and find out about the candidates because we have stinkers in both parties. we need good representatives in the house and the senate. we need to look at their records.
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caller: host: political gridlock could be in prospect. that could be what the public wants. in light president clinton and his failure to pass a health- care bill, president obama's popularity is based on that front. americans have yet to feel the benefits. the kaiser foundation, which monitors the health-care sector, says premiums have risen by 14% since 2009 to $4,000 per year. president obama promised to reduce health-care costs. democrats are talking about everything other than health care. it is a telling of mission given that it was the president's
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signature reform. let's go to philadelphia, pa. all the republican line. caller: i am em a registered republican, but i will not be voting republican in november. i do not want to bring back 1994 and like the gentleman in west virginia. that would be negative. the gentleman in kentucky that is not here visiting, the democrats do not have to pray that it will be 1994 and more because it will be more of the depression we were headed for. was it enough? host: can i ask you, how is the senate race looking in
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pennsylvania? at the plant to vote? caller: i think the republicans are in for a big surprise. the callers wanted to know why your show lanes towards the democrats. it does not. i think it is buried there. you do not have republicans calling in. i think there are some republicans out there like myself. we have seen what they had done to this country. eight years was enough. host: the financial times says the attention is turning to al mr. obama will turn towards divided government. the parallel is when it did gingrich seized control. his party had been in the minority for the previous four years and over reached. he deprived the government of day today funding. the public blamed the
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republicans for the shutdown. the president regained the initiative and was reelected one year later. this lifted a comment from twitter. he says that america can go back to it cannot -- cannot go back to the policies that got it where it is today. caller: i am sorry that the republicans do not get back in power. they have already said what they are going to do. they are going to but our government on hold. they have not accomplished anything. they have not tried to help the people of this country. all they are concerned about is keeping their party in power. host: a piece for the denver post -- we are going to look at some of the races around the country.
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colorado failed to and lostda -- colorado failed to oust dan mays. he reiterated his the intention to remain in the race. the winner will preside over redistricting. the governor race has taken a bizarre turn in the last two months. that is from the "denver post." there's more reporting going on after the colorado race. several republicans have distanced themselves from mr. mays. someone who had pelage rest -- someone who had placed report -- someone who had pledged support
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has taken it back. a dramatic paragraph on his website biography as his experience as an undercover police investigator might have been incorrect. that is what is happening there. new york, congressman rangel -- was situation is the facing? charlie rangel is not the only one facing judgment. it will also be a public test of democratic vowels to run a clean congress. the "new york times" has a poll asking if rankle should stay in congress or leave. a majority says that he should resign in light of the ethics charges against him. boston mass., jack r. meyer republican line. caller: it is certainly going to
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be back in 1994 again or this country will be doomed. what i want to mention is now that the unemployment picture is bad and the economy is bad, the only thing about the points to is how the markets are doing. the irony is the only reason the stock market goes up is because it proceeds about going down. if you check the stock market over time cents obama appeared on the same, whenever he has done something positive, the markets have gone up. whenever he is popular, the markets go down. the market is going up because the markets perceive the democrats losing in the upcoming election. it is a catch-22. if the market goes up and he
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gets credit for that, it is counterproductive. host: we got your point. yes go to donna in pennsylvania. caller: as long as democrats get out and vote it will not be and we cannot have it be. they are always going to tell us what they are going to do. it is wrong to be investigation after investigation. they are going to waste taxpayer money on these investigations. this administration could have done that. they chose not to. i wanted them to. i wanted to didn't -- i wanted them to investigate the torture, but they did not. host: busted to tacoma, washington and the republican line. caller: this will be a nice little twist if you required everyone to first mentioned what they do not like about their own
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party. i think it would be very constructive to have everybody mentioned a thing or two and cut to the center. i think they will take over because the american people are in the center. they are not on the left. they are not on the right. they do not like these ideological fights. someone said we needed to fight fire with fire. i agree. we need to fight the fire of the government double with firing 35% of them. maybe a constitutional amendment that says government workers can never make more than the private sector. thank you c-span. i do understand the american people are at the center. host: let's look at some of the political stories going on right now from "roll-call."
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the president chose cleveland for his speech next week of the economy. that is where john boehner laid out his party's economic stand last week. a top official said that during his visit, minority leader planar detailed the of republican economic agenda. in other political news, the president used his labor day weekend to defend his economic record. that comes to us from "the hill." obama was handed over the recovery. jeff davis used his radio address to pound his economic record. he suggested the economy would thrive if regulation was lesson.
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let's go to nebraska and are independent line. caller: good morning. i am an independent. i was a democrat for 40 years. i worked democratic campaigns for candidates. this is going to be 1994 all over again. you can see the ground swell. people want change. i am a minority. i am proudly elected a minority president, but i am not proud of his record. peake. host: republicans are looking at 30 governor seats. they are likely to do particularly well in the midwest. that would reverse the current
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state of the governors and actions which are held by 26 governments -- 26 democrats and one independent. it may provide few protections for democrats this year, especially in three mid-western states. it is the time for redistricting. that is the process of dividing the nation into 435 congressional districts which occurs after each census. the institute mississippi and the democrat line. caller: hello. it will not be 1994 again. they act as if we have forgotten how we got into this situation. we do not have amnesia. we do not what the republicans back in town because all they do is to buy. they are not try to help the poor. the mexicans, the blacks, and
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the good white people -- we will come out and vote. that is all in host: to say. john in florida. caller: i have three quick things. obama might as well have said if you vote for me, you throw your work boots away and you never have to work again. hillary clinton turned into arizona and she ought to be held for treason. the third day is, obama did not tell the truth about pulling the troops out of iraq. we're still paying for civilians over there. host: the governor in arizona admits error about the be headings. jim brewer said he -- she was wrong when headless bodies were turning up in the arizona desert.
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she was raised in a debate. she did not respond after the debate. she has since acknowledged that she was wrong. she said she was referring to a cartel related violence in mexico that could spill over into the united states. brandon is on our democrats line. caller: i just want to say that it is not going to be 1994 again. people in the south realize that. >>the people in the south realie they are not helping themselves by a betim republican. there is more poor democrat people in this world than anything. host: the sketch to harvey and
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on our independent line in fresno, california. caller: i hope it is 1994 again. i am 82 independent. i am not democrat or republican. some of your other colors, i have noticed that the democrats are killing our line. i am also a minority. it is time for people to start thinking with their heads and not their hearts. i call this program 18 months ago and told people it is not obama, it is the people in washington with him that are causing the to these problems. thank you. host: lester to columbus. john on a republican line in ohio. caller: thank you for taking my call. a lot like to commend c-span.
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when you think about the people, there are probably people that wanted to be there. the results were seen in the last two years. i do not understand why obama would not have buckled belt and not gone on vacation and spent time working to create jobs. we do not see anything like that at this point. the bills that they have passed had been unpopular bills by every poll the anyone has ever put out. they are pushing things through that they think we want. they are supposed to represent the people. i think the people are aggravated.
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host: economic coming to us from twitter. economic twitter -- you can send us your comments on twitter. and we will read them on the air. coming up next, we will talk about self employment with the national association for the self employed. we'll be right back. ♪
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>> searched the term mid east peace and he will get more than 1700 programs and more than 8000 transcripts. interviews, panels, and forums all the way up to this week's middle east peace talks. all free online. it is washington and the world your way. >> there is nothing about finance that is like rocket science. you think about ponzi schemes. the biggest ponzi scheme for wall street is telling someone who works really hard to earn a buck that they are not smart enough to understand how that but will be invested. >> she was the first to predict major losses for citigroup, one of the world's largest financial
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services, companies. she's our guest on the night. >> join our conversation of the american revolution, the making of the constitution, and the importance of historical study with godon wood on booktv. >> washington journal continues. host: this is the executive director of the association for the self-employed. hell of the self-employed fairing in america right now. caller: obviously the economy has not been kind to the self- employed. guest: this demographic has been doing exceptionally well in terms of growth. we see a lot of people out
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there who are necessity entrepreneurs. a lot of them are thinking, "well i had this business idea. we are seeing a growth in self the deployment due to the economic downturn. it is difficult for somebody to start a business right now. it can be quite difficult for anyone. host: what are some of the toughest things people are facing right now. guest: the biggest thing has been the credit climate. one of the big things self- employed people are having is finding financing. banks have continued to tighten their lending standards. it is more and more difficult for them to access to financing. we always hear that they have to
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dip into their savings, it dipped into their 401k. we tried and encourage them to avoid credit cards. quite often, a lot of self- employed businesses use credit cards to finance their businesses. host: she is the national director. you can give us a call and join the conversation. perhaps you are self-employed or have questions about it this is the right time considering the economy. how do the self-employed compared to other small-business owners that are a step above? guest: it can be hard to be self-employed. you are out there on your own. you are responsible for every aspect of your business. yet to figure out everything from taxes to health care. you have to do the day-to-day
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work. it can also be very isolating. we feel it is important to be part of a self-employed community. the conjoined of local groups or your local chamber. host: what do self-employed businesses look like? what are we talking about guest:? interestingly enough, not many people never this, self-employed is the largest segment of the business population. over 77% or self-employed. many worked out of their homes. many may have office space. there are lots of self-employed retail shops. there are about 23 million in the united states as we speak. it is a force to be reckoned with host:. we are looking at a graph. 77% self-employed.
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caller: that is the majority of small business owners in the united states. i was reading a story recently. this piece came out in the wall street journal that talks about how england is a nation of shopkeepers where the u.s. is a nation of consultants. it is a culture of who is the boss. americans run their own businesses and do everything from construction, to financial services, to agriculture. guest: we see that within our own membership. the majority are consultants. they are accountants, doctors, lawyers, itt . we have a saying in our office. that is how a lot of our members feel.
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they want to take control of their own destiny, particularly in this climate. it helps to feel like you're in control of for your business is going, where as you are in the news of big corporations downsizing. i think it is safe to say that they feel they have control of where they want to go in the future. host: you read a piece called "on a business." you wrote that there is a little-known provision that will increase its tax regulation beginning in 2012. to be hardest hit? small business. guest: one thing we face is tax regulation. the first introduction to of entrepreneurship is the irs.
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you have to have all of your t's otted and your crossed. irs form 990 is typically used for contractors. if you pay them more than $600 in a year, yet they've file a form 1099. in the new health-care law that was recently passed, there is a regulation to expand that requirement. self-employed people will have to file 81099 to any vendor to which they pay $600 per year. if you are self-employed and use someone for your cellphone or internet, you'll have to issue your provider a 1099.
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what we have found is that, on average, self-employed people pilot two or 31099's a year. double increased paperwork. again, time and taken away from what you should be doing which is taking care of business. caller: thank you for taking my call. my wife and i have had a small business for about six years. we have seen that it was tough to get started. luckily we were in a credit crunch at the time. we are making a success a bit now. this new regulation about the 1099 -- i have never filled out one.
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i am looking at probably two dozen with utility companies, my suppliers, and phone lines. now every time i talk to a new vendor i have to get their federal id number. what is the current status in congress? i wrote my congressmen and senators and have just gotten lip service from that. i know there is something in congress to get that portion of the lot removed. caller: i agree with you. guest: we are trying to work with congress to get this issue addressed. there is movement on this issue. when we get back from recess, congress will put get the small business jobs act which will provide help for small business
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owners out there. what the amendments that will be introduced will be an amendment to repeal this form 1099. we are strongly supporting that repealed. we have been working with the administration. other small-business associations are very concerned about this. this will be overwhelming for all businesses, especially the self-employed. i do not think in the midst of writing the massive health care reform bill they realized the extent of regulatory burden. i think members of congress are realizing that this might have not been drafted exactly how it should have been. it might do more harm than good. we are going in the right direction. i am hoping that before the legislative session is over and people have out to campaign that
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we will have this issue addressed. host: listed to memphis, tenn., on the democrat line. caller: we are self-employed. my family has been in the real- estate business for over 30 years. we have been successful thus far. we were paying higher premiums, but it is helping us to get situated as far as our business. we have accomplished a whole lot. i am understand that it is helping us. we are a small business. we are doing fine. host: 1 concerns small business
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owners have is a health insurance. how can i possibly do that if i did not have health insurance? guest: health insurance is a top issue that self-employed people mentioned. especially if you're coming from a typical employment background or your employer has provided benefits. you can to get into my comfort zone. you have to figure l all on your own. there are a lot of pros and there are also a lot of cons. self-employed people typically purchase insurance on their own in the individual market. there is underwriting, so if you have a pre-existing condition or some kind of health issue, you can quite often be denied part coverage or you have to pay more for coverage. a lot of self-employed people are at a disadvantage for that. the senate reform bill produced
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that. it says, 2014, insurance companies can no longer take that into consideration. they have to mansart -- they have to issue you a policy. another positive thing is that there are some subsidies. there are some small business tax credits. unfortunately, we fail -- we feel like they did not structure that credit effectively. self-employed people cannot take advantage of the small business tax credit. in addition, if you hire family members, you are unable to take advantage of the small business tax credit. in 2014, it will be some subsidies for individuals. if you make less than $44,000 a year or if your family makes
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less than $88,000 per year, you have financial assistance for health insurance. that is a positive thing. there will be any benefit requirements for the self- employed. it is a balance between cost and coverage. they need to have a quality plan, but it needs to be affordable for them. the issue is that health reform puts a lot of requirements and mandates on benefits. plans will be required to have certain types of coverage, things like mental health coverage and substance abuse coverage. that will add to costs. while they will have more generous coverage after health reform, the self-employed will pay more for it. if they are happy they have more generous coverage and are willing to pay for it, it is a plus for them. if they had been struggling with costs, they will be weary of the tax -- weary of the health
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reform. host: this is kristie arslan. 77.5% of employees are self- employed. 22.41% or firms with between two and 49 employees. 99.9% of all businesses are strong -- are small businesses. guest: it goes to what we do here in washington these days. we need a policy shift here. a lot of the economic policy being discussed now is focused on larger sized small businesses. when you see a chart like this and you see how much of the segment is to the self- employed, you realize that we need to focus policy on the needs of this demographic
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because it is the democratic that is the largest and it is the demographic that is growing in our nation. from jesse inar los angeles on the republican line. caller: i am working as a stagehand. i have done this for 30 years. we are self-employed. it is different than having our own business. i am curious as to how this actually helps what we are dealing with as far as difficulties with the union situations that are guest: some people at a disadvantage competing for jobs and opportunities.
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one of the things that we try to do is really work with organizations. if we can find an organization that does what you do where you can work with other business owners in the same field, we may be able to band together to get the help you need. there are certain associations that can assist you if you are having issues in your local area. if you are trying to expand your business, having difficulty in some way, i highly encourage people to go through their local small-business development centers, which of wonderful resources and opportunities to get free assistance in any aspect of your business. bacon also guide you in any way you need for help. host: here is a question by e-
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mail. guest: from our member perspective, according to our demographics, we have a small percentage of our members who have a gross income over $250,000 a year. this comes from the debate over individual tax rates, the bush tax cuts, which are being discussed right now. there is concern about letting them expire for extending them. it would be detrimental to those that are self-employed. that is if they are extended or made permanent. they pay business taxes based on their personal income tax rate. if you let the those rates increase, you are raising taxes on the self-employed.
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the administration is talking about doing an approach where they will keep the rate the same for people making under two under $50,000 a year and over, it would revert to pre-bush rate. our concern is the majority of the self employed are not going to experience tax increases. host: democrats line, making georgia. caller: there is a conservative group and a democratic group,. sometimes i do not know the separations. we treat our corporations and business owners in america with abuse. if they do not get to this or that, they will go to other countries and take their
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businesses over there. i think that is a great idea. i would like to have people wanting to get into this global exchange market to get people from other countries the care of of this country. they know they are having a hard time, and there are always people there looking at how much money they can get out of the government and cut the benefits of the elderly and poor people here. this country has gotten greedy. people who do not have anything call in and say i want taxes raised. but the regulation over the country is so much greater than us. [unintelligible]
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watch some of the fda readings we have had. host: thanks for your call. let's get a response from our guest. guest: we do not have the luxury to be able to export or do their business internationally or go overseas, these are local businesses, main street, people that work out of their homes. they help their community and local economy. people think self-employed are hobby businesses. the majority where their business is the primary income of their family. it is integral to the success of their family. they contribute quite a bit to their community.
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a big issue has been the political environment we have been focused on policies not politics. we do not get involved in election season in terms of endorsing candidates. our goal is to work with whoever is willing and able to work with us to get something positively done. our job is to make sure we get the best numbers we can and make sure we have a voice in washington. host: a good story from bloomberg this week with the drop in unemployment. the number of americans self- employed dropped to the lowest level in eight years. the economic recovery is not strong enough to nurture new businesses.
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some formant tends to go down during times like this. guest: that is correct. we also see a lot of necessity entrepreneurs testing the waters. it is a lot of hard work. many find it can be overwhelming and difficult. i think what we are seeing here is a lot of people have turned
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back into the job market that normally would try to start their own business. it may be more difficult or burdensome than they thought and started to step back out of that as well. this is the segment. if we look at the data and the growth of all types of businesses across the board, over the past 10 years, the self-employed sector has grown larger than any other business sector. other demographics have grown less than 2% while this has grown 3%. we focus on where we want to grow our economy. host: we have this video showing 3.5% of growth. when you are self-employed, you
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cannot be fired but you cannot quit either. what does this mean for the people who choose this as a way of work? when is the time to go back to trying to find a more conventional job? guest: this is why we need to shift our policy. the first three years of the business cycle is so crucial. a lot of businesses fail. it is difficult. so many factors go into the business. you need money and finances. then the tax benefits. it is a challenge. what we need to do is i likened it to the tv show "survivor."
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the current economic climate is like that show. a business owner has to struggle and go through all of these challenges in order to achieve. once they win the game, they get $1 million. once a business is successful, then the government helps you. then there are tax detections. but you have to survive in order to get all of that. we are providing assistance on the front end in the first few years for financing. that is how we are going to grow the economy. host: jacksonville, florida. caller: i wanted to ask a couple of questions from the lady. i am a retiree. i was working on a job for 30 years.
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i started a small business on my own. i am the darker color of the victoria's secret person. i wanted to sell into mid products for ladies. specifically for full figured ladies. the first five years from 95 until 2000, it was fine for the first three years. i went to different shows, but my own materials and products. in those years, it was really good. the benefits were good. then i started out of my home. i went to a small vendor shop in a flea market. then i went to a small shop on the street.
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now when i open up a storefront, i went down. i want to go back again, because there is a sense of joy in my heart for that. i do not know where to start. i am starting to buy a lot of products. i want to start on facebook or something with advertising. i want to do less with the government. i am buying things out of my own money. i have my own insurance out of my corporation. i want to go back to my dream. i am 66 years old. is there someone i can contact to help me? guest: resources are key. we are seeing quite a bit of those that have retired that want to start to their own
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business. many people love their business. they have a lot of ideas. we are seeing older americans try it out. we have a lot of tools and resources into its guide to help the at our website at nase.com find your local small-business development center. they are typically at community colleges. they are free of charge for you to go in and meet one-on-one with a counselor. i remember you mentioning facebook. one of the big trends is using social media as a tool to advertise your business, get clients, get people falling you.
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people out of a small business developments center can help you as you move forward in that direction. host: democrats line, los angeles. caller: i am very interested to speak with your guests. i am a member of nase. i have bought into the health insurance sponsored by them. a year ago i went through a cancer thing with surgery and chemo and radiation. i was flabbergasted to find out what was not covered. it is one-quarter of my monthly income that pays for this health insurance.
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i went over the bills with a system of mine. it has a bunch of negotiated discounts for providers. there is will fault coverage. of wanted to ask you if there is some way you could look into the practices of this insurance company and offer something better to us, the members of this organization? guest: i hope you are doing well. many small-business associations offer a whole host of benefits to our members. it is difficult for them to find the things they need. one of the most important things they need is access to health insurance.
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in the current insurance market, it is hard for someone who is self-employed to take care of everything they need. give us a call, we can help you with your specific needs. we want you to be smart shoppers when it comes to health coverage. it is very important to know what is covered and what is not. we have a guide to understanding health coverage. it will walk you step by step through the questions it needs -- you need to ask. we want you to know what you are getting when you purchase health care. you will need to be a smart shopper.
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people are very concerned about cost. they want to see what that monthly premium is going to be every month. you need to be concerned about what you have in there. if you are facing an illness or health issue, it is going to be critical. host: here is a comment from twitter. this is a comment from one of our viewers. is there a small amount of businesses relying on these contractors? does that put people in a hard spot? guest: contractors are being used quite a bit. it is not necessarily a bad thing. you have to crack down on the use of independent contractors. that would be highly detrimental
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to this. many companies are downsizing. a lot of those people who work for the company's will get work as a consultant. you basically say we do not like the contractor model. this person does not the same kind of benefits. they will put a lot of people out of business. many choose to be self-employed. they want the ability to make determinations. it is an issue. it becomes more of an issue with this fiscal crisis. the employer are held to the irs. a lot of policy makers work with
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contractors in an attempt to get the revenue. it is a segment that is growing compared to any other in the population. >> this is from the website showing us where the self- employed are located. let's go to ohio on the republican line. caller: been morning. i have a question that i do not understand. i have heard they will find you money each year if you do not have insurance. this sounds like a way for the government to make $1,000 and your big businesses which are paying $4,000 for your health insurance, they will drop your
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insurance and make $3,000. they say they will have insurance. guest: that is very true. one form of the built and is an individual mandate. every american will be required to have health insurance. if you do not have health insurance or you do not want to get it, you will have to pay a fine. you will have to pay a fine if you do not purchase health insurance in 2014. there is a mandate. if you have one specifically or more, you will be required to provide coverage to your workers. you must do your part to pay a certain portion of that coverage for your workers.
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your workers are still required to have health insurance. your business owner has to make a determination to see if they want to process that or if you are going to let them find out about the health insurance options on their own. host: our guest is the national association for the self- employed a legislative offices executive director. he said this is not a recession but not much of a recovery. people looking to go to become self-employed, what factors
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should they consider with the economy, their local economy and trying to decide if it is really viable? guest: it plays a role in making the determination if you want to do this. it is about your business plan and whether you feel you can make it a success. the credit and funding is a factor. because of the current economic climate, it is difficult to get the financing and credit from banks. a lot of self employed people use retirement funds that it used for other things. if something should happen, you are left without a cushion or safety net. also the tax climate is
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important. right now in this economic climate, we mentioned the form 1099 regulation. it will be harder for a new mantra. nor to do this. it will require more vigilance. it is so important to get involved and encouraged policy that is beneficial for the self- employed. host: arizona, independent line. caller: i hope you will give me a minute to explain this. i think the employee-owned companies -- the way i see this happening is 100 veterans and it
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would have to be done locally. but they each get a thousand dollars. that loan would be paid back through payroll deductions that are monthly. put 100 of them together with a $5,000, half a million dollars. it should go to the organization with a business plan. they would give you an equipment loan. during the time that spain adopted the euro, many companies went under. there are people on unemployment and lost all of their money in one lump sum -- some. host: let's hear about the guest:.
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veterans are crucial. we work with the veterans administration and development center's that encourage self employment among the veteran population. there are a lot of resources out there. they will face -- while they get more of a helping hand, they will still face the climate to the other -- that other business people experience. some of veterans and not be able to open a shop because of physical and parents. there is a home office deduction that is unworkable even though half of all businesses have them. because it is -- there is
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concern said the irs will fly them for auditing if they take the deduction, they do not. simplify this so that people can benefit. this is an example of a targeted item that would have a profound effect. but they are focusing on other aspects focused on other businesses. i think it is a very viable option for them. host: white plains, new york. caller: regarding a title insurance business, we are members of this organization. i think they impose a sales tax on out of work which we have to build our clients. we have to pay the state of new york sales tax. it is ridiculous. they also have a slight tax that
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small business people and have it passed on to their customers. it is ridiculous. the only thing we are funding is a state pension. a million state workers employees. we have to fund all of these people. no one is willing to cut. we pay our own health insurance. nothing is paid. host: what is the one thing that would improve the climate for you? caller: cut taxes, especially in new york state. guest: thanks for being a member. we always appreciate our members. we are a large organization with about 200,000 people nationwide.
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taxes is the most universal issue. everyone has to file their taxes. it is an important tool in terms of policy to help businesses. i agree with you, state climates are affecting some businesses right now. we know that our federal budget is in trouble. policymakers are searching for ways to deal with small business. what tends to happen is they tend to create or raise new taxes. we need to encourage them to help not harm a lot of small businesses.
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we are concerned about the individual income tax rate. we want to make sure they stay status quo. i mentioned the home office deduction. people could simplify their benefits. another thing out there that i highly recommend is something people do not get to take a business deduction for their health-care costs. another example of how unfair the playing field is we have been working hard and there is a provision to provide a one-year tax deduction for some of those people to deduct health-care costs as a business expense. it is a tiny provision that would benefit so many people during tax time.
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we are looking hard to raise additional funds. host: democrats line, hastings, mich.. caller: my comment was that for the last year, i have been out of work. i was an advertising sales rep. it got to the point where we ended up going into business with our son. we did not in the loans. we cannot qualify for anything. we took money out of our 401k. we got offers, but we do not want to take them, because we do not want the bills to stack up.
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the paperwork with the loans, it is astronomical. we were able to take money out to start our business. i do not know how you're able to do it normally. there is no money in the budget for employees. guest: funding is always a big issue. personal credit is how they stay in business. trying to finance their business, they ligature personal credit, personal financial picture. a lot of people use equity in their homes. a lot of self-employed people cannot use their home anymore. it is a big issue. there is a perfect storm coming in together with the tax credit
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and the economy. it is very difficult for self- employed people. we hear a lot from policymakers. first on their list, last on their list. we want their rhetoric to be used in action. being self-employed is a job. you have created your own job. you are just as important to the economy as any other business. we need to defend that the policy makers. they cannot look at these issues in a vacuum. are we going to work on health care or tax cuts? for someone that is self- employed, it is part of the same issue. one big pot of money. it is used for taxes, health
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care. policymakers have to realize this is intertwined. host: she directs thenase advocacy program here in washington. thanks for joining us. we will talk about what is next for sudan. here is a look at this week's news through the eyes of political cartoonists.
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>> the former assistant to secretary of state for african affairs from 2005-2009.
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thanks for being with us. >> thanks for having me. host: an election is coming up scheduled for january. it will give the south of sudan and opportunity to have some independence. guest: the referendum will be held in early january. january 9. we have done arrangements to get the voting materials in place. there have been in many different roadblocks. they have been fighting over the composition -- , composition of the commission. people are fighting over the selection of who will be over the commission's. a chairman was selected.
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now they have selected the secretary of general after an impasse for preparing the referendum. there have been delays. host: npr reported that after years of on and off civil war between sudan, they will vote if it should become an independent nation. no one is sure what independence will look like. after nearly half a century of course, they are expected to vote. -- century of wars, they are expected to vote. guest: they have been enslaved by the north and marginalized. i think the people of southern sudan feel the best option for them in terms of the self-
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determination and living a life of democratic governance should be independent from the north. they have had a couple of civil wars. we are trying to avoid the third one with this referendum. the south would succeed -- secede from the north. there would be a boundary established. there is a 1956 boundary line. that was that the north-south founder ray -- boundary of an independent state. institutions are fairly weak. but most of the oil reserve lights -- reside in the south. part of the comprehensive peace agreement is for the north to make it more attractive to the south. they did not sell. it is likely that people will
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vote for secession. >> independence will not bring the rain. there are drought issues. guest: that is right. the comprehensive peace agreement made sure the and one only beverage the north. never did -- only governor to the north. but nevertheless, the south has not felt they are part of a unity government. they did not feel they were given real say in the government. they want to determine their own future with their own government. that is a very effective option for them. host: she, our guest is a distinguished professor at carnegie-mellon university.
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she has served as u.s. ambassador to south africa. you can join the conversation. we are talking about sudan. here are the numbers at the bottom of your screen. how interested in the north in seeing the celled separated? you mentioned oil being most prevalent in the south? guest: 1 party probably does not want secession. that has been at some of the problems selecting the composition of the commission. this elected members opposed to independence. there was a person selected by the congress party that chairs the commission. they are fairly resistant. there will be issues the day after. we know that this is a very
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difficult transition to make into a new independent state. how would you guarantee the continuance of some share of the oil wealth? they need to negotiate that issue between the north and south. otherwise, the no. 1 not allowed the south to secede. so they are likely to return to war if they try to stop it. host: we have a call from tennessee. good morning and go ahead. caller: i would like to ask how we here in america can support what is going on over there in sudanic? i am in the american south. i would like to touch base with my people over there. how can i help more? guest: it is important for
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american citizens to write to their congress people to argue that the united states has to be engaged in the next critical stage of the history of sudan. and if you are part of a church group, the southern sudan liberation movement have many members in churches across the united states can contribute to provide assistance to different society groups or churches. i think there are many people from southern sudan that should be reached out to from the united states. talk to them to find out how you can be a support for them. host: jacksonville, florida.
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caller: besides the oil, what natural resources does sudan have? i think there was a report of 200 women thattt were affected? guest: sudan has a tremendous conflict. the north has enslaved the southerners in the past. timber, hydropower, it is full of resources. the largest country in africa with rich resources. the raping of the women, i am not sure where that happened. but in western sudan, there is conflict.
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there is continued crisis in southern sudan between different tribes. there is a nasty rebel group called the north resistance from you gotta that operate throughout the region. they are operating in the condo and they go around attacking women and children and abusing them. there is quite a lot of conflict and turmoil in the region. host: how effective are outside groups monitoring that in trying to alleviate that situation whether it is the united states or the un? guest: the u.s. has been a big supporter of the un and played a role. there is a peacekeeping mission
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-- mission in our fruit -- are in dargur. -- darfur. this region is a cure -- huge, more than 900,000 square miles. it is hard to monitor all areas of sudan. host: you mentioned the size and the population, 42.2 million. some other facts we have is the major language is in arabic, english and the major religions islam, christianity, and another. here is the life expectancy, 56 years for men. 60 years for women. here are some of their main exports such as oil and cotton.
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let's take another call. boise, idaho, republican. caller: good morning. i want to thank you for your service dr. frazier. i think he served during the bush administration. thank you for serving under an administration that seemed to know what the heck they are wrongdoing. i want to follow up on the un question. you hear all these atrocities going on, and the u. n had forces there. why are they not more effective? why are they not going to countries such as egypt helping these nations? i am sorry. i am getting off track.
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i do not understand it the ineffectiveness of what the u.n. does when they are there. you hear stories about you and forces contributing to some of these problems. thanks. the bush administration played a huge role in negotiating an agreement. part of the challenge is the government of sudan itself. the national congress party put many different roadblocks in the way of the effectiveness. when i was in the administration, the you and would not allow helicopters operate after a certain hour. anything that took place during the evening, no one was able to
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go and respond because of the rules of the national congress party. you can ask the question, why would the u.n. allowed a government to dictate to it how it is going to operate but given that it is operating under a chapter 7 which is a reinforcements resolution. i think the un has gotten itself into a physical situation where it allows the government to dictate certain things, where it should not do that. there has been real issues with effectiveness. a lot of it relates to the party and extends from the government.
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host: obama administration intensified efforts in sudan. can you comment on how there has been a policy shift since president obama took office? how are things different now than what they were then? guest: one problem is the caption expectation. he took a strong line in criticized the bush administration saying, you are
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not doing enough on sudan. he promised a no-fly zone and take more robust action against the government of sudan. they have done the opposite. many activists are concerned that they have used all carrots and no sticks. people who worked in sudan for many years no the government cannot be trusted in sudan. there are gaps in the expectations of what this administration should do. it took a long time to come up with a sudan policy review. it took more than nine months to come out with a policy that would use sticks and carrots. they lost their momentum during a time when they were doing the review. that has been a challenge as well.
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with all carrots and no sticks, it leads to infighting within those. we need to get through these elections and the referendum scheduled for january. there is a huge difference between president bush and president obama in terms of personal engagement on the issue. president of patient -- bush from de two said he wanted it to be a priority of his administration. we are not on the same level of attention or focus for president obama, despite what he said as a candidate. the desire of many to see the president's resolve issues in the administration as well as to actively engage with other leaders who are critical in
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ensuring that this country does not go back to war is absent. that has been the challenge of the obama administration. host: independent scholar in phoenix. -- caller in phoenix. caller: what you are saying is very interesting. i would not give the bush and administration too much credit like you are doing. guest: i do give them a lot of credit, because in 2001 when he came into office, there was a civil war raging in sudan. 2 million people died during that civil war that had gone on for 22 years. credit -- president bush immediately said he wanted to make that a priority. he had a special envoy right
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after 9/11 and did not allow that to distract him from addressing the humanitarian crisis in human rights crisis. he put in place a person who worked very closely with a secretary who over the next five years negotiated a peace agreement. his administration was on the phone calling leaders. his national security team had many principal committee meetings. the secretary of state and defense and treasury and the cia director and national security adviser and others were trying to figure out how to move forward in sudan. the results are there with the signing of the peace agreement.
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it has -- is what they are currently living under, but is threatened now because of a lack of similar attention by president obama. we hope that president obama will become more personally engaged said that we can make sure that country remains a peaceful country, which impacts nine countries in the region that it borders. host: here is what one newspaper reports. you are talking about carrots and sticks. what could the administration used as sticks? guest: put on additional sanctions. there are significant ones already there. that would probably have may be
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a limited impact. they could send a clear signal to the north that is will provide a security guarantee. if the government decides to go for independence, and the war starts again, then they are dealing with the united states as well. we have to make sure the neighbors know that the united states wants to be fair and will not allow them to obliterate israel. we want to have that message for the north to not allow them to restart a war against southern sudan. that would be a very strong signal. the only way that signal is credible is to make sure the administration speaks with one voice, which is the voice of the president. host: next caller.
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caller: it is in the interest of israel to deal with the sanctions in sudan the same way that iraq was broken up. perhaps you can tell us [unintelligible] guest: i am a professor at carnegie-mellon university. i work for a very respected university. i do not think this is a matter of partisanship but a record. i am very interested in your comment that israel is sending weapons to southern sudan. the north is putting significant weapons into southern sudan,
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their old strategy of divide and conquer. they are trying to pit different ethnic groups against each other. i think it is very important for the southerners to continue to negotiate in good pressure on the war. the president of southern sudan and the government of national unity is part of the presidency. he should be able to exercise influence with president of the north and unified. i do not think it is a matter of interest of israel where others, but the north has not made certain things attractive to the southerners. they have the right to make that determination as negotiated in the peace agreement. i think we should keep partisanship out of this and
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stick to the facts. thanks. host: james, in the pan , mississippi. caller: -- independent line, mississippi. caller: the problem is the lady was saying the united states needs to become more engaged in sudan. we do not have the money or the resources or the manpower or the will in congress to make that happen. i think this is more of a united nations problem. if the united nations does not want to give help, we need to reassess our role in the un and if we should continue to be a member of it. host: we will leave it there. he asks a good question about what is the role of the united
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states versus the u n. guest: the reason why the the southerners have a right to secede is because the north and the self negotiated that right per the agreement. the north and gave that right at the negotiating table. you are quite right that there is the issue of the united nations responsibility and the responsibility of the united states. our issue is -- sudan is the largest country in sub-saharan south africa. it will impact nine countries that border it, which creates a regional crisis that the united states would have to respond to from a humanitarian point of
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view. it is better to prevent the war then have to respond to it as a humanitarian crisis. those countries that border sudan our course and our issues of counterterrorism. osama bin laden used to reside in sudan. al qaeda has a presence in the sudan and the horn of africa, those countries that border sudan. it can create another failed state that al qaeda could exploit. just as it is exploiting the civil war in somalia. in that civil war, citizens have become suicide bombers and it led to the bombing of our embassy in kenya and tanzania. it is not simply a matter of the
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united nations responsibility. it is, but we also have core national security interests at stake if they return to war in sudan. we must remain engaged. it is not just money. it is also leadership. it is diplomatic leadership that is dealing with time as well as money. .
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>>. guest: let me explain to you. marginalization by the nationalist party against the region. that led to the sudan liberation
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army, the s.l.a., based in darfur, rebelling against the northern government. they also rebel with an eye toward the comprehensive peace agreement, because they saw the deal that the sudan liberation agreement got and wanted a similar stake in the running of the company. there is a relationship. it was felt a the ugandan government was supporting the government. the sudan ese intelligence forces were instrumental in funding the army. they are not separate.
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i take your point that we all don't want a return to war, but we have seen war as the majority of sudan's history of independence, three quarters of it has been in civil war. it's actually having peace now with the saw the. it's still in war with the west in darfur, so there is work to do. the point that is we need to come together. i'm not sure why you're wanting to blame israel and neocons. the united states has to take a leadership role to help deal with a government that has marginalized the people. host: david, you're up next, republicans line in grand rapids.
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welcome. caller: thank you for taking my call. i want to thank jendayi for commenting about sudan. i would like to hear from you, in my opinion, i think most of the problem is u.s. is not taking a good role in pushing china and others to help the government of sudan. until u.s. and china, and russia come to the table in good faith, nothing in sudan will happen because of oil and the interests of those two countries, especially china. host: david thinks the united states could do more pressuring china and russia. guest: that's right. i would emphasize the role of
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china as critical. two international partners that are the most important in the future of sudan are the united states and china. i think that we could cooperate together to put pressure on both sides, so that we could have a vote that would be respected by all sides. i don't know whether the southerners would choose to secede. it's very likely that they will. one country that could insist that the vote be respected is china. i am in agreement with you. guest: as things move forward, what should be done to insure that the people of sudan do reap the benefits, and that they're not taken advantage of by outside interests, oil companies and countries? guest: there's a big challenge here. one of those issues that has to
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be negotiated in terms of the post 2011 decisions is international treaties, and what are the agreements already in place that the northern government has signed with china and others, canada, even, and others who have interest in the oil. those agreements are going to have to be looked at, both by the north and south. it's not a matter of the south taking over and saying we are going to start afresh. those are agreements that have to be honored, or maybe can be renegotiated with the new independent government, but that's an area where there's need for cooperation between the north and south. another issue is what do you do with the citizenship issue. northerners will live in the south after the vote, and southerners who live in the north. what is their status? we won't want a situation where there's ethnic cleansing or people pushed out of their homes
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because they are not now consider add northerner or southerner or citizen of that new country. those are important issues that have to be addressed. finally, the real challenge for the oil is corruption. there's corruption in the national congress party and in the sudan people's liberation movement. there needs to be greater transparency, and checks put in place so that those governments will allow that oil revenue to be for the benefit of the broad society, rather than going to the pockets of government officials. host: silver springs caller. caller: there's a lot of misinformation about the sudan. when we think in terms of the civil war, john grange was never in favor of the sudan being
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dismantled. he always wanted a unified sudan, but what he fought for was that in that unified sudan, that the southerners would have a better unit, and enjoy the benefits that that unity would bring about. when we think about southern sudan, we speak as if it is predominantly christian, for instance. it's not. the majority of the population consists of non-muslims and non-christians. thirdly, i wish that for once, the united states would use its power to facilitate the forces of unity in an african country rather than disunity. we have to remember that in terms of the comprehensive peace
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agreement which was negotiated that that provision calling for the referendum was something that the west actually insisted upon. host: let's get a response. guest: i appreciate your thoughts, but i have to disagree with you, as well. i was actually part of the process of the negotiation of the comprehensive peace agreement. i can assure that you it was not the west that insisted on a referendum. in fact, we didn't believe that john garang could get it. i agree with you that he stood for unity. he had the personality, the charisma, the national vision where he actually believed that he would be elected as the president of all sudan and could bring that country together and move it forward for the benefit
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of all the different regions. he believed in unity, but he also negotiated formally for the right to secession. we did not insist on it at that we didn't believe he would be successful in getting it. we actually pushed him to agree to move towards and agreement, and not use that as a blocking or sticking point of those negotiations, because we put a higher premium on peace than we did on a future possibility of secession. but it was the stlm who took control of their own destiny to have that included. one of the biggest tragedies of sudan was his death. the count i would be on a different course if he were
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still alive. host: our caller is from queens, new york, good morning. caller: good morning. i want to thank you dr. fraser for her information about sudan. i have been very, very active with protesting what's going on in sudan, particularly in washington, d.c. at the united states nations and at the chinese mission here in new york. i have three quick questions, i actually have more than that, but i'll give you three. number one, have you personally met with president obama to pressure him to be more active about the situation? number two, what is happening with the i.c.c.'s call for arrest of the president of the sudan regarding the genocide in darfur. number three is what is going on more in the south if they vote
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for independence, have they formed a government to rule the country in the south? guest: thank you for those three questions. i have not met with president obama since he's become president. i met with him when he was senator obama, and i was assistant secretary for african affairs, and i would brief him. since he's been president, i have not met with him. i've written several blogs object africa.com about sudan, urging him to take greater leadership. i think it's very important for him to do so. vice president biden recently went to africa and did useful
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diplomacy. host: on the i.c.c., it's issued another arrest warrant. basically president al-bashir has an arrest warrant for any country that he travels in to turn him over to the i.c.c. the i.c.c. can't do the arrest itself. it depends on countries that are significant in aatories to the i.c.c. substitute to actually arrest him. he's been traveling around, went to kenya recently. they are significant in aatory to the i.c.c. he went to chad recently, and no one has picked him up. the arab league and african
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union has said that the arrest of al-bashir would undermine the peace process, and don't support it at this time. that's an unresolved issue. the i.c.c. is maintaining that he is a war criminal and calling for his arrest. on your last question, about the government of southern sudan, they have a government in place right now. it was a government elected in the april elections. they would carry forward with that government after the referendum in southern sudan. there's another referendum which would decide whether he goes to the south or north, actually two votes in january that are important for sudan's future. host: let's get one final caller from virginia. welcome. caller: good morning,
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dr. frazer. if we want to make sure that the front tears are respected, why would we encourage the independence in southern sudan, and not in western sahara where the situation is clearly a country that has been colonized by spain, recognized by six states around the world. i would like to you rationalize this for me. thank you very much. guest: thank you very much for the question. i think there are really two different issues. in the case of sudan, we are not encouraging the separation of sudan. it is in fact the right of the southerners as negotiating the comprehensive peace agreement to vote on that choice.
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so, it's a different situation in western sahara where you have morocco, really basically not accepting polosariy as the governor authority of the western sahara. i think the united states's position on the western sahara should be more in line with the african union, but i think that issue, which in our government is not dealt with by the sub saharan africa, essentially dealt with by the middle east bureau. i personally think that i would urge the united states to follow the africa union's view on western sahara, but it is a separate and distinct issue that southern sudan were negotiating an agreement that gives the people the right to decide their
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future status. host: jendayi frazer has served as the u.s. ambassador to south africa, currently a distinguished professor at carnegie-mellon university. we'll be right back. ñw
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host: charlie peters is the author of lyndon b. johnson. you speak about one of the tapes of president johnson's era. this is richard russell talking about vietnam, may 27, 1964. host: i don't believe the american people would want me to run. if i lose it, it would seem i pulled in, and i don't want to commit us to war. i'm in hell of a shape.
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i've got a study being made now. i want you to come over one night and have a drink and see how important the two of them are, malaysia and india, and how much it would hurt if we go out. i know all those arguments, but last night, he said nothing can destroy you as quick as pulling up stakes and running. america wants prestige and power. i said i don't want to kill these folks. he said if you don't stand up for america, they'll forgive you for everything except being weak. >> there's a whole lot in that.
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>> he said go in on hot pursuit. >> you can't clean it up. >> you can take a half million men, you would be bogged down in there for 10 years. he said well, we never did clean korea up yet. >> no, not yet. host: we were just listening to the president talking with richard russell about vietnam. guest: there's nothing more telling than that tape. it shows how deeply divided johnson's soul was about that war. his real instinct was it was just going to be a mess if we got in heavily, that he was going to kill a lot of american boys, and so he knew, he was fully aware of the downside, but he was petrified of seeming
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weak, seeming like he was going to -- that conversation, he mentioned that with judge morrison that happened the day before, an old trusted advisor of his, didn't make any difference how many americans got killed, he had to stand up, or he would lose the presidency, and lose to goldwater. his fear of goldwater was very great. host: he entertained a lot of people who had criticisms and concerns about getting involved in vietnam. guest: there was a series of meetings in july of 1965, just before the major troop escalation. during those meetings, he raised all of the doubts that anybody
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in the antiwar movement expressed, but then they would just glide over those objections as they thought of the other arguments against pulling out, of the fear of the domino effect, the fear of losing the rest of southeast asia, the fear of caving in company the commie. it's hard for people to remember the fear of the communism was greater than the fear of al-qaeda today. we had just witnessed the building of the german wall. you saw the hideous side of the communists, and we were well aware of that.
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most of the history of the war is a horrible mistake, it was the arguments at the time appeared very compelling to do what he did. host: our guest is charlie peters, for 30 years the editor of monthly. in looking at president johnson's decisions about vietnam, you write that he was trapped by what he thought he had to do, but he did clearly see where it was all heading. guest: yes, that's the heart-breaking thing. i was once at a meeting at the white house. i was working for peace corps at the time. it was supposed to be five minutes, he was going to wish the volunteers well, but he kept us in the office for over an
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hour, as he went through this agonized reading of letters from mothers and fathers who had sons in vietnam, of letters of condolence he wrote to them, and you saw them, the man was just in torment. later, it got bad enough, i was having lunch with a friend after leaving the white house, and i said what's wrong with johnson? and he leaned over and he said, "he's crazy. "the stress of 1965-1967, before he renounced the presidency in 1968, the stress on him was enormous, because he knew what he was doing to himself with the war, that he was really constructing this great society,
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of having a presidency that he could be proud of through history that would rank him among the great presidents, and at the same time, it was nearly destroying himself. host: when you describe that, it sounds like he was trying to convince himself as much as others. guest: that's very perceptive, that's exactly right. also, the other was the young people. he was desperate to try to explain to young people, and get them on his side. host: tell us about his complicated personality. we all know images of him in the senate, being known as showing muscle pickup right about him trying to please a lot of people, trying to please others. host: he was trying to speak to
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sam russell witness the speaker of the house. johnson and lady bird went to tremendous effort to win them over, and of course, johnson always called these people his real daddies. host: let's get to calls approximately fred joins us from west virginia. you're on with charlie peters. caller: thank you very much for c-span for trying to do a better life for everybody. i have a president for president johnson. he had a speech in new york about immigration. he said that i made a new law that immigrants coming in u.s. has to be two conditions. one is he has to have a very
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close relative, and second, he has to have some kind of skill or know some kind of job. i know if they do that, the problem is going to be solved. host: talk about immigration. guest: the speech he refers to i'm not familiar with, but one of the tremendous accomplishments with johnson in my mind, as least, was the immigration bill of 1965, where for years, we had had a great wave of immigration around the turn of the century, but then congress had passed a very restrictive bill that for 30 or 40 years restricted immigration to people, pretty much to white northern europeans. it was almost impossible for someone from southern or eastern
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europe to get in, or from anywhere else on the planet. johnson opened america up to a fair immigration status for people from all over the world. this really helped change the face of america, and made it more the country we know today. host: adriana joins us from massachusetts. caller: i'm a first time caller, long time fan of c-span, and charlie, i feel like i know you from all the times you appeared with warren. guest: remember those times? caller: warren with the chicago papers. guest: he was a conservative, but i was a liberal. he was a wonderful, reasonable man. we had wonderful discussions where we would, i think we each could see the other guy's good
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point. conservatives and liberals don't do that today. caller: they sure don't. guest: i'm so glad you remember that. caller: oh, yes. i'm a staunch democrat and a big hero of obama. my question to you charlie, this morning, is that my kids love obama and the fact that he did gate health care plan through, and once it's through, you can fix it. if there's nothing through, you can't do anything. guest: that's right. l.b.j. understood that. caller: i feel with l.b.j., we might have gotten a public option and bye in to medicare. i'm now going to take you off mute -- i'll listen to you on the phone. go ahead. guest: i honestly think if you
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look back at medicare, johnson made a good many concessions to get that bill through. he in willing with the american medical association did nothing to challenge the fee-for-service way of paying for medical care that has, to me, remains a major, major problem in american medicine. johnson didn't take that one on, just as there were issues that obama didn't take on this time. really, my study of the medicare bill makes me more understanding of the concessions obama made that some of us liberals weren't too happy with at the time he made them. host: let's take a listen to president johnson's great society speech at the university of michigan. >> we have the wisdom to use
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that wealth to enrich and elevate our civilization. you, imagination, and your initiative and indignation will determine whether we build a society where society is buried. we have the opportunity to move not only toward a rich society, and a powerful society, but upward society. host: what is johnson's legacy for the great society?
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guest: in the general feeling that johnson failed on the war, his immense accomplishment, the great society is forgotten, or downplayed. johnson got more legislation passed than any president except franklin roosevelt. there's nobody else that rivals lyndon johnson. in that sense, and i'm not just talking about getting the old about hims passed, i'm talking about getting important changing of the country legislation, like medicare, like the building rights act of 1965, the civil rights act of 1964. those were the laws that finally made the promise of the declaration of independence real, that all men of created
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equal. at last that promise was made real, and it was lyndon johnson that delivered the bills. that wasn't easy, getting a civil rights bill passed with the power of the south, in the congress was an act of near genius, i think. host: christopher joins us from washington state. good morning. caller: i have kind of a historical question about president johnson that i hope you can help me with. we hear a lot, and there's a lot written about johnson and the vietnam war, but i wonder if you could talk a little bit about his role or his attitude toward the war in korea 10 or 15 years earlier both at the time, and i believe he was in congress at that time, and then how he came
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to reflect on it later in his presidency, because he did bring it up in his conversation on the phone that you just ran a few minutes ago with senator russell. guest: i think korea had tremendous impact on so many americans. see, we had all -- the american history i learned when i was as boy was we always won the war. well, korea was the first war we didn't win. we had to settle for a tie, so johnson, most people who lived through that were aware of the bloody cost of that war, and of the fact that we had to live with a tie. in fact, johnson all through the vietnam war, to his credit, was
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always willing to settle for any peace that would leave the south vietnamese free to decide their own fate, but the north would not agree to that. he had a partner in negotiation that wanted it all, and finally, what we had to do was concede that even though there was a good argument for staying in south vietnam, the government we were working with was just too corrupt and inefficient, and could not win the loyalty of the south vietnamese people, so it was hopeless for us to go on. we weren't going to prevail. we were going to keep on killing people, so in effect, we had to give in. that was a very painful thing to do. host: you write about the great society and changes that lyndon johnson tried to make, in
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education from k-12 and higher education pickup wrote about his time as a teacher, teaching at a very poor school in texas. he came early, stayed late, developed extracurricular activities, parent group. you write that his being there was a blessing from the clear sky, the kind of teacher you wanted to work for. you said he did a lot of things out of his own self-interest to get ahead, but why did he become so dedicated to the kids. guest: there was the bad side of johnson, and the good side of johnson. his teaching experience at that little school was one of the great good sides, because he threw himself into that job teaching these small kids, running the small school with all the energy as if he were president of the united states, the same effort, the same
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commitment to the kids. that memory of those kids, that stuck with him all his life, and one of his most touching speeches is about the look on the faces of those kids as they realized the prejudice against them, and which was in texas at that time, mexican-american kids were treated like dirt. johnson remembered that, and that was one of the great impulses behind the civil rights bills and the education bill. host: let's go to a caller from texas, richard joins us on our republican line. good morning. caller: good morning. mr. peters, can you tell us anything or do you know anything about the box 13 issue, and i believe about the school, he
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only worked there a couple of years. guest: i wish most people as far as johnson had the concern for people to work in a place like the small school for a couple of years. he actually worked there for a year, but he did great things in that year. this is a story of the election that there was considerable evidence that johnson stole the presidency -- the senate in 1948 in texas. there's considerable evidence that the -- he ran for the senate first in 1941. there's considerable evidence that that election was stolen from him. and what had happened at that time was he was ahead in all the early counting, so he was anxious to get the count out,
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and so his campaign published the polls as soon as they had them, as they could. the opponent held back the counties they controlled, so once all of johnson's votes were in, they could tilt the votes in their counties they controlled. johnson did the exact reverse in 1948. there was one precinct where there was like 1,000 votes when they finally turned them in cast for johnson, and only 600 registered voters, so it was somewhat suspect. there was little question that there was a lot of hankie panyy
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from both sides. host: our next caller is from michigan. caller: the lessons of the vietnam war, as it applies to today's wars, seems to me that vietnam was fairly contrived, the gulf of tonkin incident, we entered the war under false pretenses. it seems to me that iraq is the same thing, or similar, has lots of parallels, and even afghanistan, the fact that the government is to corrupt, and it's supposed to be ourally. it seems to me that our leaders have not learned, really reviewed or learned the lessons of the disaster of vietnam. guest: i agree with you about afghanistan. i'm afraid that as -- one of the
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points i was trying to make was the arguments for being in vietnam seemed very good at the time, very compelling. well, so did the arguments for being in afghanistan today. what's going to happen to the women of afghanistan if we pull out, and that's a horrible thought. well, you know what happened in vietnam when we pulled out, the antiwar people never want to admit that a million south vietnamese fled in boats because they didn't want to live under the north communists. there will be a real cost to giving up in afghanistan. i do not see how we can possibly prevail with the government that is as corrupt and inefficient as karzai's just as we could not prevail in vietnam with a
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government that was corrupt and inefficient. host: president johnson you write had knowledge about things and allowed the american people to essentially be misled. guest: that's true. his first instinct on the gulf of takin was to downplay it. he was talking to the former secretary of treasury under eisenhower, a very influential man, anderson. johnson told him he kind of provoked, there have been some south vietnamese raised on the north, and the north suspected that our ships might be supporting those rides, and so they had some excuse for attacking our ship. then anderson said just like judge morrison had said way back
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earlier that year, anderson said, but goldwater will acrossify you if you don't seem to stand up to the north vietnamese. johnson thought that over. later that day, he decided he was going to turn it into a chance for him to stand up and show that he was just as tough as goldwater, and that was of the real reason. it wasn't to manufacture a war, as the previous caller suggested, it was to deal with a political reality of that time, of that moment, the political reality of the only threat from goldwater, the only way he polled better than johnson was policy being tougher on foreign policy. host: joan joins us from tennessee, an independent caller. caller: i am 65 years old, and i
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was one of the protestors of the vietnam war, marched, but of course, with age comes wisdom, and at this point, i really appreciate what president johnson was up against. even though i did not vote for him, because i don't vote, that's not cyniyism, i did vote once for the son of nancy pelosi. i think that lyndon johnson is one of the great presidents because of what he did in passing the civil rights act. he did that, even though you knew that it would cost the democratic party the white south, but he did it based on moral reasons, because he really wanted to perfect the
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constitution, and that passing the voting rights act, even though it would cost the democratic party the white south, he did it because it was the right thing. guest: that is such an important point, and i really congratulate you, culler, because i think nothing is more important to understand the great side of lyndon johnson than that the courage it took. he knew that it was going to cost him the south. he knew it, and he had the courage. it is so funny, the great irony of lyndon johnson is that he worried in connection with vietnam so much about demonstrating courage. i think he told doris kearns of the nightmare he had all during
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the presidency, this was talking to doris after he was out of office. the nightmare was of bobby kennedy leading a mob accusing him of being a traitor, coward, weakling if he left vietnam. of course, bobby had been somewhat hawkish, so johnson had a reason to fear the hawkish side of bobby. johnson didn't trust or understand him. just as that fear of goldwater, he feared bobby would criticize him if he pulled out of vietnam, just a glorious misunderstanding. he was so worried about showing courage in vietnam, and yet he had displayed immense courage in the civil rights bills, knowing
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that he was risking losing the south, which he did. host: let's listen to president johnson talking with robert kennedy in 1964 about the civil rights bill. >> mr. president? >> yes. >> we had a meeting all day today with senator dirkson on the civil rights bill and feel that we have an agreement with him, with senator akin. >> congratulations. what does he think? can he get the votes? >> he thinks so. we'll have a meeting monday morning. >> are you in pretty good shape with the folks someday in the bill? >> we meet with them at 4:30. they're not going to be happy, but nothing makes them happy, and so we just have to accept that. >> i don't know, you did a good job of making everybody happy on the house side. >> in october, they weren't happy when we did it.
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>> i know, but they saw the wisdom of it after you did it. >> after it was over. senator dirkson was terrific. >> should i call him? >> should i give you the names? senator akin, and phil hart was damn helpful, and senator magnusson, and of course, dirkson. >> thank you, bobby. host: president johnson talking with attorney general robert kennedy on reaching an agreement in the senate. guest: that was glorious. host: i heard you laughing. guest: what wonderful moment, the conversation. sometimes, bobby was a little
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idolized about his liberalism. you notice the remark talking about the senate liberal, and he said at one point, nothing would satisfactory those guys. and i worked with bobby, and i knew that other side of robert kennedy, so that made me laugh. that was a great example of kennedy and johnson actually working together to get that civil rights bill of 1964 through. host: let's go to timmy, democrats line in nashville, tennessee. caller: good morning. host: good morning. caller: i spent a year working with president ford publishing his final book that was on the j.f.k. assassination. my question is about a couple of things that even president ford would not talk with me about,
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and that related to l.b.j., and that is it true that he was being investigated by the senate for bribery and corruption, and that was at least part of the reason that he was not going to be on the ticket with president kennedy in 1964? guest: he was going to be on the ticket, i think, kennedy had already made the decision that johnson would be on the ticket, and johnson, he had asked johnson to go with him to texas and help arrange the trip to texas. there's no question johnson, there was a people in the kennedy camp, and i think maybe that included robert kennedy, robert kennedy, and lyndon
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johnson disliked each other intensely from the very beginning, when they met in the 1950's. i think bobby had opposed johnson being given the vice-presidency in the beginning. there was two sandals, one billy sol estes and one bobby baker. one thing moving about the bobby baker scandal is it threatened to reveal johnson's girlfriends, and jack's girlfriends. i think jack saw considerable common ground. there was a conversation, one of those fascinating conversations, bobby could be quite self-righteous, but there was a
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call from bobby to baker that they've been trying to quiet down the scandal. jack talked to bobby, we've got to do something bit, and bobby said to bobby baker, who was a man of let's say of not the most sterling character, but that, oh, we have great confidence in the president. we have great confidence in you. we know you're going to get through this, and all that was to keep bobby quiet about jack's affairs. host: let's go down to the republican line with don in st. petersburg. you're on the air. caller: and i have question for mr. peters. i read something the other day that president eisenhower tried to have the civil rights bill passed in the late 1950's, and it was killed in the senate by lyndon johnson, and then in
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1963, johnson got it passed in the senate, 1963 or 1964, and then he took credit for it for the rest of his life. is that correct? guest: that's not correct. in 1957, under johnson's leadership and with only tepid support from eisenhower, johnson passed the civil rights bill of 1957, which, to me, remains one of the miracles of american legislation, because to anybody who lived through the 1950's as i did, and was working in a legislature, as i was, knew the tremendous difficulty of passing any liberal bill in that cautious atmosphere. this was the mccarty era. people were petrified of doing anything that seemed very liberal. johnson got the united states
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congress on record as saying these civil rights actually existed, people had the right to go into restaurants, all these places, to go vote, to their education, all these rights. the bill was toothless. some of the at this times said it should have been tougher. to me, it was amazing that he got the bill passed. he got richard russell, his southern friend to persuade his fellow senators, southern senators not to filibuster the bill, which was an amazing accomplishment. johnson, i think on the matter of civil rights, his father had had the courage to fight the ku
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klux klan in texas when johnson was a small boy. the klan in texas when johnson was a small boy, the klan was very powerful. the unquestioned good side of johnson to me was this side that showed when he was teaching in texas, shows with the civil rights bills, shows with education, with the great society as a whole. this man, really, i was like him, i was a franklin roosevelt worshiper. i understood the religion. his religion was when he could escape the shackles of the southern senator, and as a president show his real liberal side. that's what he did. host: democratic line from illinois, johnny, hi, there. caller: from hegewisch.
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i would like to ask mr. peters, i'm a vietnam veteran, and kind of a back room historien about that war. my question is speaking of eisenhower, right after johnson made the announcement that he was afraid to send american boys to fight in a war that oriental boys wouldn't fight, and right after that comment, a short period of time later, johnson called eisenhower, or vice versa, and eisenhower scared johnson into believing the domino theory. right after that conversation with eisenhower, i understand, is when johnson made the commitment of 150,000 more troops. would you speak to the beginning of that war, mr. peters, and god bless c-span, and bless you all. guest: i think there was no question that eisenhower had
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influence with johnson, but i don't think it was in any way decisive on this matter. i think what was decisive with johnson in getting into the trouble in vietnam originally were that the gulf of tokin resolution was political, set up to keep him from having an attack from goldwater. johnson also feared that the democratic convention was coming up later that august, that same month, he feared that bobby kennedy would lead a revolt in the party against him. he was totally neurorottic about bobby. that was political. the decision of the major escalation by the time they made that, that was made out of real -- the other thing of
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johnson -- of my having shared a part of johnson's life was if you worshiped f.d.r. because of the fight for the depression and for the average man, you always worshiped him for standing up to hitler, churchill. they were two heroes. you weren't going to have anything to do with another munich, or sell out a checkle czechslovakia. the domino theory, they really believed. the communists had taken over a lot of countries. the fear that they would take over

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